My close-ups seem to lose the feel of my sub­ject. Any ideas?

ImagineFX - - Imagine Nation -

Aby Ab­dul-Muid, United Arab Emi­rates

Sara replies

To set the pic­ture in the best way I help my­self with di­ag­o­nals and me­di­ans. Here, my evil de­mon’s fa­cial ex­pres­sion should be con­sis­tent with a ma­lig­nant per­son­al­ity. So I paint him with fur­rowed brow, nose curled and clenched teeth. At this point, I pro­ceed with the colours. Be­cause cool colours ap­pear more dis­tant, I choose a blue-grey­ish colour for the back­ground, and use a warmer colour for the skin of the char­ac­ter to make it stand out and bring it up to the viewer’s eyes.

To fo­cus at­ten­tion on the char­ac­ter I add more de­tails on the face and leave other ar­eas in the pic­ture less de­fined. I choose a di­rect cold light­ing with very strong shad­ows to bet­ter de­fine the shape of the char­ac­ter, and in­tro­duce vi­brancy with the con­trast be­tween light and shadow. I fo­cus the bright­est point near the eye­brows, cheek­bone and nose. Fi­nally, I choose red as the eye colour, to em­pha­sise the evil fea­tures of the char­ac­ter.

I add a warm light from be­low, and some sparks as a fi­nal touch, sug­gest­ing the pres­ence of fire that also gives move­ment to the por­trait.

To add live­li­ness and dy­namism I choose a top-down view, and I make the eyes co­in­cide with the cen­tre of the im­age, to fo­cus at­ten­tion on that point.

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